This House Is Made From Tomato Stems, Grass and Other Farm Waste

published Dec 10, 2017
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Denmark is officially home to the world’s first biological house, a conceptual structure built from upcycled agricultural materials, including bits of tomato stems, seaweed, grass and glass that would ordinarily be incinerated and used as an energy source. Brings a new meaning to the term, “farm house.”

The sustainable structure is the first to be erected as a part of Biotope in the town of Middlefart, the largest Danish sustainable construction exhibition. The concept house became a reality thanks to the creative input of 40 partners who saw the project through from its idea stages through completion, maintaining a particular emphasis on “architecture, indoor air quality, materials, and unique design.”

Sustainable architecture firm GXN collected the upcycled materials to be used in the construction process. The farm waste materials were then combined and clad together, created tightly pressed boards. Wood-treatment company Kebony then put the boards through an environmentally-friendly treatment process that caused them take on properties of actual wood. Afterwards, the boards underwent testing from The Danish Technological Institute and passed with flying colors, proving to be more durable than typical building materials.

But its sustainability properties don’t stop there. The designers opted to swap the classic concrete foundation for screw plies. Additionally, the house is entirely modular and leaves no environmental damage behind when it’s deconstructed and relocated.

Another delightful detail about the home’s construction is that it was built in total secrecy, which probably makes it all the more intriguing to visitors who glimpsed the structure for the first time a few weeks ago.

Of the eco-friendly home, Danish Environmental Minister Kirsten Brosbøl told New Atlas:

“It sounds like science fiction that you can build a house from things such as tomato stems, straw and seaweed, which is just as durable as normal buildings and at the time has a healthy economy and complies with the rules,” She added, “However, the Biological House shows that it is possible here and now. I appreciate that way we really get some value from materials that otherwise would end up at an incineration plant.”